Agenda for the 10th Parliament
Written By:pps (Presidential Press Service)
Thu, Mar 06, 2008
President Mwai Kibaki Thursday expressed confidence that the
country shall overcome the setbacks it faced recently and create a
solid foundation for development.
The President also challenged Members of Parliament to prioritize
the agenda of building a new Kenya above any individual or
President Kibaki, who was speaking when he presiding over the
State Opening of the 10th parliament, said that the country was
keen to resume its path of development in all aspects in spite of
the post election violence.
During the occasion the President thanked Kenyans for their
resilience as individuals and as a country during the critical
moment witnessed immediately after the December 27th general
elections and even in other similar events in the past.
President Kibaki urged wananchi to use the crisis as a crucial
turning point and come out more focused and determined to stay on
course so as to realize their collective vision of a free, just
and prosperous nation.
"The events of the last two months have offered us an opportunity
to look inwards and fully comprehend both the weaknesses and
threats on one hand and strengths and opportunities we have as a
nation," said the President.
He added: "As a nation, we have come through a challenging two
months since the December 27th General Elections. The
post-election violence that saw more than 1,000 people killed,
over 300,000 were displaced and billions of shillings worth of
property burnt or looted shook our sense of nationhood."
The President assured those affected by the post-election violence
that the Government had set up a National Humanitarian Assistance
Fund with an initial endowment of 1 billion shillings to provide
humanitarian assistance and resettle the displaced persons.
He said that a new Directorate of Resettlement had been created to
oversee the resettlement of the internally displaced persons, help
them restore their livelihoods and become economically engaged the
President Kibaki pointed out that the National Accord signed last
week between him and ODM leader Raila Odinga was hinged on the
understanding that the public had spoken clearly that they wanted
a united Kenya, in which all people lived in peace, justice and
The President said: "Indeed, Kenyans will always prefer peace over
conflict, prosperity over desolation, unity over discord, and
justice over injustice. This is why on February 28, I and
Honourable Raila Odinga accepted and signed the National Accord
because our people had spoken clearly that they wanted one Kenya,
in which all lived in peace, justice and harmony."
The Head of State, however, noted that the successful
implementation of the accord required goodwill, unity, good faith
and integrity from the August House and all other leaders in the
country because it would lay the foundation for peace and
stability in the country.
He, at the same, time urged parliamentarians to ensure that all
the necessary bills to implement the accord and other social and
economic reforms are passed as a matter of priority so that Kenya
can be fully restored to, and even exceed its former glory.
"I urge honorable members to ensure that all the necessary bills
to implement the Accord and other social and economic reforms are
dealt with promptly so that Kenya can be fully restored to, and
even exceed its former glory," said President Kibaki.
In this regard, President Kibaki said the Coalition Government
will introduce and give priority to the following bills:
- The National Accord and
- The Constitution of Kenya (Amendment)
- The Establishment of Truth,
Justice and Reconciliation Commission Bill
- The Establishment of the Ethnic
Relations Commission of Kenya Bill.
The President also urged Members of
Parliament to be fully involved in promoting and leading various
peace and reconciliation committees because the post-election
violence had stretched inter community relations to a breaking
President Kibaki added that Parliament, as the representative body
of all Kenyans, must rise to its momentous responsibility of
restoring peace, security as well as law and order in the country,
urging parliamentarians to become ambassadors of peace and
reconciliation in the country.
"Honourable Members, you must now become the ambassadors of peace
and reconciliation in your constituencies, among your communities
and throughout the country. Kenyans need to hear and be reassured
by their political leaders that they can live, own property and do
business in any part of the country without fear of prejudice,
harassment or persecution," President Kibaki said.
In this regard, the President said that the Government would bring
to the House a comprehensive policy and accompanying legislation
that would ensure that the threat to national security and social
cohesion caused by negative ethnicity is neutralized for the well
being of our country.
On national security, the President assured Kenyans that the
Government would sponsor legislation and policies that can
safeguard security of all while at the same time protecting the
rights and freedoms of the citizenry.
Noting that Kenya has witnessed irreversible changes particularly
in enjoying their freedoms of association and expression without
fear, the President urged them to uphold the responsibility, which
is enjoined to the enjoyment of such rights.
"As a people, we are now fully aware of our rights and freedoms to
whatever we want. At times, however, it is evident that we are yet
to fully comprehend that real freedom and liberty also comes with
the responsibility of ensuring that in enjoying our rights, we do
not do harm to others," said the President.
On infrastructure, the President said that comprehensive measures
will be undertaken to operationalize the Urban, Rural and National
Highways Authorities as well as register and build the capacity of
On gender issues, the resident Kibaki reiterated the Government's
commitment to promote gender equity.
"We will continue to support the current policy of ensuring that
30 percent of public appointments and new employment opportunities
are reserved for women," said the Head of State.
The President also outlined the Government's priority legislative
and policy proposals in several key sectors among them agriculture
which needs to be assisted to recover quickly from the recent
setbacks it faced.
"The past five years have seen the agriculture sector perform
robustly from the policies implemented by my Government. We,
therefore, expect it to recover quickly from the recent setbacks
it has faced," observed the President.
Other key sectors include the tourism industry, legislation to
entrench the recent reforms in the education sector within our
country's laws, amendments to the Armed Forces Act to enable youth
trained under the National Youth Service be absorbed in the armed
forces as well as legislation and policies that safeguard our
Later, President Kibaki mingled and chatted freely with other
members of the Tenth Parliament at Parliament grounds.